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I Forge Iron

George N. M.

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About George N. M.

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    Senior Member

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  • Location
    Laramie, Wyoming
  • Interests
    Blacksmthing, camping, hiking, historical reenactment

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  1. MJ, A few suggestions to, IMO, improve your poker: 1) put a point on the tip and flatten the short, bent portion. Sort of a leaf shape. 2) Improve the bend by making it a sharp 90 degrees. If you can't get it done on the edge of the anvil catch the tip in a vise while hot and bend it to 90 degrees. 3) Put a decorative twist along the shaft somewhere. 4) As previously suggested, open up the loop of the handle. 5) Taper the end and bend it back in the opposite direction from the loop of the handle. As it is, it looks unfinished. As to pricing, consider your audience. If you are a a far
  2. Mark, you will have to experiment with various techniques and sizes to get the correct tones. For example, a certain size "tongue" when treated with process A may give you a D note and the same size treated with process B will give you a D flat note. For hardening mild steel try "super quench" (google it). It will harden mild steel as hard as it may be hardened. While I know that it will harden mild steel I do not know how it will affect the "springiness" of it which will be the controlling factor for a tone when struck. "By hammer and hand all arts do stand."
  3. Billy, you are not alone in liking bagpipes. I have had pipers at both my weddings and hope they will be at my funeral. One of the things I like about Celtic festivals is that all day, near or far, you can hear bagpipes. Sometimes it is a full pipe band performing or practicing and sometimes just a lone piper. Bagpipes are used not just in Ireland and Scotland or even just Celtic regions. They show up in traditional music in places like Lithuania, Germany, Greece, and various other places. One of the legacies of the British Empire is that various miitaries around the world use bagpip
  4. That song was, I think, the first mention I ever heard of a hod. 'Twas the early '60s, I was a teen, and the singers were the Clancy Brothers and Tommy Makem. "By hammer and hand all arts do stand."
  5. Only on IFI would you find folk who not only know what a hod is but have carried one. It would be better if your name was O'Frost since hod carrying is a traditional Irish-American occupation. "By hammer and hand all arts do stand."
  6. The best buys and scores at auctions that I have had over the years is when there is an odd item that does not fit into the main theme of the auction. For example, when there is a farm auction, preferably at a fairly remote location, which is heavy on farm equipment such as combines and manure spreaders but has an old forge or anvil which has been in a barn for years. Most people are there for the equipment and you may be able to score the outlier, the forge or anvil, for a reasonable amount. Also, it helps to know more about an item and its value than the other people there. I once sc
  7. I have always used 3/8"-1/2" square stock and put in a twist. For small tents like Hefty's I used 3/16" square stock. All mild steel. I use a 180 degree loop on the top. Hammering side to side has always been enough to loosen them, even in rocky ground. the only one I've ever had to leave behind got hammered into a big root and I didn't have anything with enough leverage to pull it out. "By hammer and hand all arts do stand."
  8. Goods: Butternut and black walnut shells and husks are a good dye stuff for a brown-tan color. The Confederate army was dressed as much in butternut dyed uniforms as gray. We used to have a big black walnut tree in our back yard and we got the husks off the shells by lining them up in the driveway and driving the car over them. Husked them nicely but didn't hurt the shells. I usually broke the shells open on my anvil and let Martha pick out the meat with an ice pick. Much better flavor than English walnuts IMO but much harder to obtain. "By hammer and hand all arts do stand."
  9. Reaper: All you need for a basic shop is metal to hit, a pounder (hammer), a heat source, something to hit against (anvil), and a grabber (something to hold hot metal [tongs]). These can be as basic as a big rock (anvil), small rock (hammer), a wood fire, a split branch (tongs), and a piece of scrap metal. Those probably have a total monetary outlay of less than $1. Then you can move up as you can afford it. For less than $25 you can probably find a hammer, a grabber (vice grips, channel locks, etc.), and a large hunk of scrap for an anvil. You have probably been a bit spoiled by worki
  10. Will: I have a similar dish lying in my yard and I have been trying to figure out a use for it. I thought about a solar forge or a death ray but decided that either would have unfortunate side effects. I am planning to cut it up and see if the local scrap yard will swap it pound for pound for carbon steel springs, etc.. My concern is whether it is too porous to direct the smoke over your fire pit. Also, if the cutouts in the sides are high enough for you to easily access the fire. Since the alloy is unknown you will probably have to experiment with how hot you have to get it, how lon
  11. Yes, "it depends." The main variables are the steel in the garage door spring and what kind of terrain are they likely to be driven into. My experience is that some garage door springs harden and temper well and some do not. Only experiment will tell you the properties of yours. If the camping terrain is soft I doubt that you will see much difference between tempered and untempered stakes/pegs. If the ground is hard and rocky then tempered stakes may resist bending. On the other hand, you may not be able to pound them straight if they do bend. Also, the suitability of the garage doo
  12. tmarkley: I'd keep it as is and use it as a horn and as a hardie base. You can use a file to dress up the hardie hole to accept standard size hardie tools. If I were you I would occasionally hit some small hot metal on it to honor all the work it did for your grandfather and all the work he did on it. As suggested I'd get an improvised anvil such as a piece of RR rail mounted vertically or something like the illustrated bulldozer weight and then start hitting iron. Keep the old timer in your shop as a conversation piece and maybe hang a picture of your grandfather over it. DO NOT gri
  13. Josh, try www.littlegianthammer.com "By hammer and hand all arts do stand."
  14. I have one of the HF band saws and it works quite well. There are a number of Youtube videos on how to modify them. My only gripe is that it is more set up as a power hack saw which cuts roughly horizontally than the vertical band saw function, which is how I mainly use it, (which is secondary in the design). I have had no problem cutting 1/2" stock on the diagonal lengthwise which is about like cutting 5/8 or 3/4" square. In case you don't know, avoid band saws designed for wood, unless it has a speed adjustment function. A metal cutting band saw moves the blade at a much slower spee
  15. Blackcloud. hoping and praying that you will beat it. I'm assuming that you are in Wyoming although it is possible to be in MT and still be at the foot of the Bighorns. But you could be anywhere from Lovell around to Sheridan or Tongue River and meet your description. Not too many 307 folk here, pretty much gmbobnick and me except for an occasional pop up from someone else. I'm afraid that I can't post many knife pics since like some other blacksmiths I'm not terribly fond of knife making, too much bench work filing, grinding, polishing, etc.. when I'd rather be hitting hot iron at the
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